Speaking on a lender panel at The Mortgage and Protection event in Salford on Wednesday, Simon Cockerill (pictured), head of intermediary sales development at Precise Mortgages and InterBay Commercial, said the implications of not having an environmentally-friendly property today were more of a risk for buy-to-let (BTL) clients.
“Loads of BTL businesses are on five-year money, so actually if you’re advising a five-year rate at the minute for a landlord think about what the implication of that timeline could cause them.
“Have a look at the portfolio, have a look at what else they’ve got and start that conversation now,” he said.
The government is currently considering legislation that in three years’ time could require landlords to get their existing properties to an EPC rating of C or above.
He noted that brokers may not have any solutions today but said it was important to start raising awareness.
Tim Vigeon, head of lending at Buckinghamshire Building Society, also asked how brokers might be addressing any green concerns when advising on mortgages with terms of 30 years or more to a borrower with an E-rated property.
Vigeon said: “I think it’s a big industry issue, not just for the lenders, but for everybody.”
Jonathan Stinton, corporate relationship manager at Coventry for Intermediaries, said it was the job of lenders and their business development managers (BDMs) to educate brokers of any incoming legislation or policy changes to help them with the advice process.
Jeremy Duncombe, managing director at Accord Mortgages, added that bringing properties up to an EPC rating of C could be addressed with mortgages, but pointed out that a significant number of homeowners will have paid off their mortgages and therefore have no incentives to renovate their homes.
“We’ve just got to make sure there’s no unintended consequences that come out of that by creating a two-tier market where you have properties which need retrofitting that then become either unmortgageable or become properties that only certain people can buy.
“We’ve got to find a way to retrofit those houses without it being a massive cost for the borrower or the homeowners,” he added.